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[dem-wuh-zel, dem-uh-; French duh-mwa-zel] /ˌdɛm wəˈzɛl, ˌdɛm ə-; French də mwaˈzɛl/
noun, plural demoiselles
[dem-wuh-zelz; French duh-mwa-zel] /ˌdɛm wəˈzɛlz; French də mwaˈzɛl/ (Show IPA)
an unmarried girl or young woman.
a damselfly, especially of the genus Agrion.
Furniture. a lady's wig stand of the 18th century, in the form of a pedestal table.
Origin of demoiselle
From French, dating back to 1760-70; See origin at damsel Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for demoiselle
Historical Examples
  • Indeed she felt, whatever the demoiselle might aver, that little option would be given her in the matter.

    A Clerk of Oxford Evelyn Everett-Green
  • He would fall in love, not with the demoiselle, but the dower.

    Night and Morning, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • He imperiously signed to his guards, and at once the demoiselle was gripped harshly by both arms.

    Robin Hood Paul Creswick
  • There's for the demoiselle who craved for knights to break lances for her!'

    Two Penniless Princesses Charlotte M. Yonge
  • It has been said that D'Hugues was one, but the demoiselle's conduct for some time past renders that improbable.

    Queens of the French Stage H. Noel Williams
  • Also a silk purse, worked by the demoiselle Marie, containing a hundred pieces.

    Robin Hood Paul Creswick
  • Of course our demoiselle can fly well; one need only look at those wings to know that.

    The Insect Folk Margaret Warner Morley
  • Alone missing from it was the cold, colorless beauty of the demoiselle Marie.

    Robin Hood Paul Creswick
  • A single word justified everything; she was a demoiselle Afchin.

    The Nabob, Volume 1 (of 2) Alphonse Daudet
  • "—demoiselle," replied Louise, complying with the invitation.

    Zut and Other Parisians Guy Wetmore Carryl
British Dictionary definitions for demoiselle


Also called demoiselle crane, Numidian crane. a small crane, Anthropoides virgo, of central Asia, N Africa, and SE Europe, having grey plumage with long black breast feathers and white ear tufts
a less common name for a damselfly
another name for damselfish
a literary word for damsel
Word Origin
C16: from French: young woman; see damsel
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for demoiselle

1510s, from French demoiselle (Old French dameiselle); see damsel.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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